We have that back to school feeling and really hitting a stride with a routine after summer. Now that we have a little more normality, it's time to take things up a notch on the productivity level. These are our best productivity tips to get you back in your work flow.
1. Clear desk clear mind
There's nothing less motivating than getting to your desk to find it's covered in papers and empty coffee cups from the day before. Take ten minutes every evening after your work day to make sure that your desk is completely clear before finishing for the day. Put your favourite wind down song on spotify and make a moment of it.
Take a cute little waiters friend and brush down your desk, make it a ritual and you'll be more likely to stick to it.
When you come to sit down at your desk the next day, you will feel ten times more motivated to start your day.
2. The Ivy Lee Method
plywood leaning desk
The Ivy Lee Method is a productivity method established by Ivy Ledbetter Lee in 1918. The premise is simple, at the end of each day, you write down 6 key tasks that you need to get done for the following day. You then rank those tasks in order of importance. When you get to work the next day you work on each task on the list and you cannot move on to the next one until the previous one is complete.
This seemingly simple method is actually quite difficult when there are many distraction at work and many things vying for your attention. Even more true now than it was in 1918, email notifications anyone? social media browsing?
Try this method and see if you are able to get through all six tasks without losing focus.
3. Time blocking
Time blocking is a really effective way to implement the Ivy Lee Method and also works as a tool in it's own right.
You've probably heard of the benefits of getting into a 'flow state' of work where you are completely engaged in the task at hand and everything is coming to you with ease. One of the best ways to get into this state is to dedicate specific blocks of time to dedicated tasks.
Multi-tasking is a myth and the best way to be productive is to take one task at a time and put your entire focus onto it.
It's easier to focus on one task if you don't have the distraction of your emails, phone and other digital devices. A great way to deal with this is to put your phone on airplane mode and use a time blocking cube to time your dedicated task section.
So say you want to spend an hour editing photos. Put your phone on airplane, mute your email notifications and set your time block cube for 60 minutes. Start your editing and don't even look at your phone or any other task until the time block alert goes off.
Just knowing that you can't look at anything will help to focus your mind.
4. The 60:10 method
An extension of the time blocking method above. If you have multiple tasks or one long task that needs breaking up, set you day up into 60:10 blocks.
What does this mean? Set your time for 60 mins, do you work and then take ten minutes off to do something completely different, a walk in nature, a coffee break, scroll tik tok. This enables you to focus effectively for a long period of time on one task and maintain that focus throughout the day by taking 'mind' breaks.